Do any  whisky awards present an honest selection?

Does that mean there is no point in reading them? This is a totally personal viewpoint by Paul McLean.

I used to avidly read every word in whisky awards, then award after award was flung in front of me by a worldwide PR conspiracy. It seems to me there are far too many awards, even then – within the awards, were awards for every single thing you could think of; NAS, under 5 yo, under 10 yo and so on, and on and on. It all got too much for me, especially when a whisky won best whisky of the year, then next year – it didnee feature at all!  Can that same whisky have been reduced to rubble in just one year?

My total top of the list for unworthy awards is, you guessed it – the Bible, can anyone really take this novel seriously?  How many of us look at his selection for world’s best and say – “What? Are you in your right mind man?”

My own feelings on awards are this … everyone has to win an award some time, it is either “who’s turn is it next?” or who does the best deal?  Again, my own view, as fellow Mac, Charlie would say, offer a blind tasting of say, 10 or 12 drams, this way you are not biased on sight label or colour, you just choose what YOU think is best (by the way, using a dark blue glass or such).

Now I do have many favourite drams, sherry finish, a peaty now and then, so many.  I was once at Dewar’s (as it was then ), Peter gave me a blind tasting of 5 drams, I chose a blend and it was superb.  My best pal/biz partner Liz took many whiskies and blended them herself; Angels Blend, never to be repeated.  We have given this to guests on tour without telling them what it is, 90% like it, we don’t really know what’s in it, as it gets topped up all the time, a wee bit like a living cask. The pair of us sat through a long dinner with a hundred people once, an awards ceremony. EVERY distillery won – awards we had never heard of. So what’s it all about?

My awards for the whisky industry;

Every distillery – for just producing what they wish. The glass makers, without whom we would not be where we are. People like Charlie Maclean, Ingvar Ronde, Ian Buxton and Dave Broom for giving us much enjoyment, whilst not making awards. Whisky lovers, like myself, who keep this industry going. The award for the biggest piece of junk (in my own wee view) the w. bible. Please save the trees and do not produce any more of these novels.

Aye, maybe a wee bit controversial?  But do you know, I don’t care, it’s my views and am entitled to them.